My really short list for the best of 2014

There were only a handful of albums that wowed me this year. For various reasons, they’re not the same ones that supposedly wowed the rest of the obligatory end-of-year listmakers. The older I get, the less my musical tastes are willing to wander.

1. The Twilight Sad – Nobody Wants To Be Here And Nobody Wants To Leave

I still haven’t stopped listening to this album more than any other. It’s just that damn good. “Last January” is also my favorite track of the year, hands down.

2. Sharon Van Etten – Are We There?

There’s just something about this album that sets it apart from her previous ones. Whatever it is, I like it, a lot.

3. Elbow – The Take Off and Landing Of Everything

This was definitely the soundtrack for my spring and summer this year, my favorite track being “My Sad Captains”.

4. The Rural Alberta Advantage – Mended With Gold

It’s starting to seem as though the RAA don’t have the ability to make a so-so or even bad album. Not that I want them to, and their third album had great written all over it from the first listen.

5. Interpol – El Pintor

I had really high hopes for this album after hearing “All The Rage Back Home” for the first time. It felt like the Interpol that I fell in love with from Turn on the Bright Lights were back. They are, just in a different way. This isn’t my favorite album of theirs, but it’s a hell of a lot better than Our Love to Admire and Interpol, that’s for sure.

6. Cloud Nothings – Here and Nowhere Else
7. Hamilton Leithauser – Black Hours
8. Spoon – They Want My Soul
9. St. Vincent – St. Vincent